Joao Pereira de Souza, a 71-year-old retired mason and part-time fisherman, found Dindim, a South American Magellanic penguin, covered in oil and close to death.
When De Souza nursed him back Dindim wanted to stay with him, and did for a bit before eventually swimming off to the horizon.
But Dindim kept coming back every year, swimming 8,000km to do so.
“I love the penguin like it’s my own child and I believe the penguin loves me,” Joao told Globo TV. “No one else is allowed to touch him. He pecks them if they do. He lays on my lap, lets me give him showers, allows me to feed him sardines and to pick him up.”
“I have never seen anything like this before. I think the penguin believes Joao is part of his family and probably a penguin as well” – said Biologist Professor Krajewski.